Nobody would deny the power of guest posting both as a source of direct traffic and as an effective link-building strategy. The problem, however, is how to find all those guest blogging opportunities so you have a never-ending supply of top quality sites to submit content to.
Fortunately as guest blogging has gained ever more popularity over the last few years there are a range of tools available for seeking out opportunities to spread your message and build more traffic to your site.
Guest Blogging Networks
The first major category of resources for finding guest blogging opportunities are the specially-designed guest blogging networks.
Before we continue on though it’s important that we define exactly what we mean by a “guest blogging network” – after all hasn’t Google all-but-crushed all the major blog networks out there over the last few years?
When discussing guest blogging networks as a way to finding guest posting opportunities we’re not so much talking about spammy, low quality networks of blogs you can post any old spun junk onto.
No, these days there are a range of sites that act almost like “dating sites” for bloggers. Those who are willing to accept content in their site can list their website details, and those who have content available for publication can list it here.
The guest blogging networks then help to match up both parties so you get your content published on a good quality blog and the recipient gets the best quality article possible.
And it’s these “meeting places” for people interested in guest blogging opportunities that can be such a great resource – principally because everyone is there for similar reasons and understands the process under discussion.
So where exactly can you meet bloggers who are actively seeking articles just like yours?
My Blog Guest
My Blog Guest is the original site for finding guest blogging opportunities and in many ways is still a very good place to start due to the number and diversity of bloggers who are members.
In essence you can upload your publication-ready guest post and then wait for bloggers in your niche to request your article. In many niches you won’t have to wait long until you have a handful of requests, which you can then whittle down to the very best opportunity.
An alternative strategy is to follow the same process of uploading your article, but rather than waiting for publishers to come to you, you can approach them directly on My Blog Guest and offer them an article specifically for their blog.
So far so good. However my own experiences of My Blog Guest over the last few years have become less and less satisfactory the more I use it.
Firstly some niches are very poorly represented (gardening and personal finance as two examples) which can really make for slim pickings when it comes to choosing a blogger to partner with.
Secondly it seems the overall number and quality of bloggers active on the site has dropped significantly over time with the same old bloggers bidding on every article I submit.
Seeing as link diversity is so important to Google, to make the very most of any guest blogging opportunities it’s important to get your content (and links) published on as many different sites as possible rather than publishing on the same few sites over and over.
Lastly many of the “admins” that check articles before they are submitted to the content library for bidding seem to refuse or decline articles for the most ridiculous of reasons. Sure, they’d argue that they maintain stringent standards for a reason but I’ve had some very worrying experiences with top-quality articles being declined for no sane reason.
Is My Blog Guest worth a look? Certainly. I’ve been a Premium member for some years and have got some excellent opportunities thanks to the service. However sadly I now find myself getting closer and closer to closing my account for the reasons described above.
Blogger Linkup is a weekly email newsletter consisting of “adverts” from bloggers looking for content or those with content available. If you find any guest blogging opportunities that look of interest you simply email the publisher or visit their site to discuss the situation.
As a result Blogger Linkup, while quite a handy addition or alternative to My Blog Guest, does generally require more manual effort to get posts published. There is no automated submission, no “pre-screened” blogs and reputation scores. Instead you’ll need to put some effort into researching the available bloggers to see if these are the kind of sites you’d like to build links from.
I have been a subscriber to this (free) service for the last year or so and have found it a great way to uncover new guest posting opportunities that I haven’t seen elsewhere. Once every week or so I wade through the list of opportunities for anything relevant to my niches and if I find something of interest I initiate contact with the blog owner.
Guestr does things rather differently to either of the previous sources of guest posting opportunities. Rather than a “matchmaking” service it acts more like a classified advertising site. Bloggers willing to accept guest posts list their website in the directory which you can then search for suitable publishers.
When you find some suitable blogs you simply use the “Pitch A Guest Post” form to contact the site owner directly and offer them your article.
Sadly while the idea is sound, Guestr does suffer from a number of weaknesses. Firstly despite being around some time the site has never gained the popularity of My Blog Guest and so the number of blogs listed is relatively small (for example just a single blog in the “Finances” category). As a result the guest posting opportunities can be pretty slim depending on your niche.
Secondly Guestr isn’t the easiest site to work with, requiring you to manually type an email to your potential blogs. And finally there is seemingly no way to tell whether a blog is still accepting blog posts let without contacting the site owner in person. It therefore isn’t a particularly efficient way to get your guest posts published.
Overall I’d say the only real strength of Guestr is that it’s free. If you have some time available you may want to sign up and take your chances. Alternatively if you’re tight on time or appreciate efficiency you may be better off hunting for guest posting opportunities elsewhere.
Guest Blog It
In many ways Guest Blog It is a clone of My Blog Guest and offers a similar level of functionality. Here you can submit content for publishers to request with free members being allowed one live article at any one time and paid Pro members being entitled to five articles in the database.
I must admit that while I have been a (free) member of the service for the last few years I’ve seen very little “action” there during that time. Combing through the available articles it seems that a surprising number were added 12+ months ago and still sit there unloved and unpublished.
Whether this is due to their quality or the small number of publishers present is up to debate but the fact remains that this site certainly isn’t over-run with current guest blogging opportunities.
Blog Synergy bills itself as a “social network for bloggers” though this may be glorifying the experience somewhat. Rather like Guestr, members are free to list their own blog if they’re willing to accept guest posts or upload their guest posts that other members can publish.
However in contrast to the aforementioned service, Blog Synergy seems to be attracting something of a following and has a decent-sized directory of sites freely offering guest blogging opportunities. Rather pleasantly Blog Synergy also provides basic metrics on the blogs in their database such as Alexa ranking and PageRank.
So while these aren’t the “be all and end all” (some would suggest these metrics are outdated by today’s SEO standards) they can be a useful “yardstick” for separating lower quality blogs from those that actually have some measure of traffic and/or authority.
As a totally free site (no pushy messages recommending you “upgrade to Premium” here) Blog Synergy is generally worth a look in our opinion though the overall blog numbers still fall short of My Blog Guest.
Post Runner operates as a network of WordPress blogs linked to one another by the Post Runner plugin. While many of the blogs in the network are owned by Post Runner themselves, the network also accepts privately-owned blogs in their network too leading to a diverse range of potential publishers for your content.
The beauty of Post Runner is the plugin that runs the system and as a result just how simple it is to get your content published. There’s no need for “networking”, no pleading for content to be published, no long-winded searching for potential blog partners.
Instead you search through the list of available publishers using factors like niche topic and PageRank to quickly identify suitable partners. Your articles can then be sent out straight to those blogs. The blog owners simply look over your content and decide to accept it (at which point it is published) or decline it whereby you can simply re-submit it to an alternative blog in the network.
As you can see, simplicity is key here and it works admirably. The owner of the network even used Post Runner as a case study to rank one of his own sites and thus demonstrate the effectiveness of his system.
That said, as you might imagine, the authority of the average blog in such a network isn’t as high as you’ll find with some good old-fashioned outreach and there are only a limited number of sites involved with the network.
Additionally this is very much a guest blogging network aimed squarely at “link builders” – as opposed to blogging on high-authority blogs with an existing readership. As a result it’s our opinion that links built using this strategy are at risk of a forthcoming Google update.
Overall though Post Runner seems to represent a quick and simple way to kick-start your guest posting strategy and get some initial links pointing to your site for very little effort indeed.
The Content Facilitator
When The Content Facilitator originally launched it operated on a credits-based system. If you wanted other blogs to publish your articles it would cost you a specific number of credits which could either be bought or earned. These credits could either be earned by publishing other writer’s articles on your own sites or by attracting new users via your own custom affiliate link.
As a result it represented a fantastic way to find guest posting opportunities without breaking the bank; namely by making use of the credit-based system you could get all sorts of content published on other sites.
Then, out of the blue, The Content Facilitator decided against that model and instead opted for a SAAS-pricing structure. A free account now allows you to find content to publish on your own sites, but if you want to distribute content for others to publish you’ll need to stump up either $17 a month for a basic membership or $47 a month for a premium membership.
When the site initially launched we thought it looked like a great idea and pushed it hard through a number of other “marketing-related” sites that we own and clocked up several thousand credits – more than enough to keep us going for months on end.
Of course when the “powers that be” decided to change the credit structure all our hard work was lost with no reward for sending them literally hundreds of new accounts. Not surprisingly that leaves a pretty bitter taste in our mouth and makes us question how this operation is being run.
According to their latest statistics, there are 1212 active publishers you can connect with here though we always found the quality of sites rather lower than some of their competitors. Now with the monthly charges involved in our opinion you’d be better to focus your energies (and cash) elsewhere such as My Blog Guest which offers a better range of sites and, as a result, better value for money.
Hotlists Of Guest Blogging Opportunities
It’s generally agreed that the most effective placement for your guest posts is on established blogs with an existing readership and high levels of authority. These blogs may be harder to get published on than those using some of the semi-automated strategies already discussed but the results can be far greater.
In addition, they may well turn out to be far “safer” from an SEO point of view as Google seems to be less and less impressed with guest bloggers at present – with potential penalties being discussed for link builders guest blogging on low-quality sites.
The problem is actually finding these target sites. One solution is make use of work published by other bloggers in the form of recommended guest blogging targets. In many cases the bloggers in question have done all the hard work for you, locating top-quality blogs in a variety of niches who will accept guest posts – if your content is good enough.
A search on Google can reveal a range of such lists but here are just a few to start you off that we’ve found while carrying out our own research…
- List of 100 Plus Blogs That Allow Guest Blogging
- The Ultimate Guest Posting Target Blog List
- 600+ Places to Share Your Content and Get More Traffic
Niche Blogging Communities
As blogging has become ever more mainstream, communities of bloggers have sprung up in a wide range of different niches. These communities allow bloggers to network with other people in their niche, discuss marketing and monetization strategies and generally build strength through numbers. They can also be a great way to “fish” for guest blogging opportunities.
For an SEO agency, gaining access to these communities can be a struggle and make you appear as a spammer. But if you’re looking to guest post as an individual blogger then you could do very well to find one or more communities related to your blog’s topic and keep a close eye out for guest posting opportunities that may arise.
Just a few examples of niche blogging communities include:
- BlogHer Publishing Network
- BlogPaws Pet Blogger Opportunity Network
- EmpowHER Womens Health And Wellness Network
- Entrepreneur Blog Network
- Fitness Blogger Social
- Food Blog Forum
- Foodie Blogroll
- Health Blogger Network
- Healthy Living Blogs
- Mom Bloggers Club
- Outdoor Blogger Network
- Pet Blogs United
- Travel Blog Exchange Network
- Travel Bloggers Unite
- Village Green Natural Food And Healthy Lifestyle Network
- Yakazie Personal Finance And Lifestyle Blog Network
Searching Google For Guest Blogging Opportunities
Our old friend Google can be surprisingly useful for finding guest blogging opportunities. There are a range of search strings that can be used to find blogs that are either actively requesting guest posts or are currently publishing guest posts from others.
Take some time to use the following search phrases and you should uncover a decent list of potential targets…
- [your niche] + “guest post”
- [your niche] + “guest blogger”
- [your niche] + “guest article”
- [your niche] + “submit content”
- [your niche] + “add content”
- [your niche] + “guest writer”
- [your niche] + “write for us”
- [your niche] + “guest bloggers wanted”
Blogger outreach is arguably the most difficult and time-intensive way to find guest posting opportunities yet it can yield the highest results. In essence rather than targeting sites that are specifically requesting guest blog posts you go trawling for top quality sites in your niche, make contact with them and try to encourage them to publish one of your guest articles.
As blogger outreach (when it’s done right at least) can be time intensive and require contacting significant numbers of bloggers on a one-to-one basis it’s not for the feint-hearted. It takes effort and dedication before your work starts to yield results. But by focusing on the top-tier blogs in your industry the results are beyond comparison.
When it’s done right, blogger outreach can get your content and your brand mentioned on some of the most authoritative and high-traffic sites around meaning not just powerful links for your SEO campaign but also direct traffic from your partner sites.
Fortunately there are tools available to help you identify the top sites in your niche, locate their contact details and manage the whole contact process. Examples include Blog Dash, Outreachr and Group High. Each have their own strengths and weaknesses and only by testing each in turn will you find which service is the best solution for your needs.
Have you ever used any of these strategies or resources? Please leave a comment with your experiences below…